Stage 15 7/22//18 Millau to Carcassonne 181.5km Hilly
Another Astana rider, Magnus Cort Nielsen takes the Stage win, Thomas keeps the yellow jersey and its looking like Sky may switch their general classification focus to Thomas. Froome is in second over a minute behind, Sagan still has the green jersey and a little drama, Gianni Moscon of Sky, gets kicked out of the race for hitting another rider.
We are rolling through wine areas today on Stage 15 of the Tour de France 2018 so it is Map Day! Stage 15 starts in the commune of Millau and ends in Carcassonne. (I have credited Wine Folly but their maps are really fantastic and you can order them here)
The Côtes de Millau AOC (red, rosé and white) is found within the Garonne and Tarn sub-region of the greater Southwest France wine region. Millau is to the very far east almost off of the wines of Southwest France map.
According to the French Wine Scholar manual, red wines are crafted from Syrah, Fer, Gamay and Cabernet Sauvignon. Rosé wines incorporate only Syrah and Gamay. Whites are fashioned from Mauzac and Chenin Blanc. Production is 60% red, 30% rosé, 10% white.
Millau is famous for a bridge, the Millau viaduct, built to span the Tarn River and ease traffic congestion, opened to traffic in 2004. It is the tallest bridge in the world.
The Tour then goes southwest moving into the Languedoc wine region.
The Minervois AOC tend to have wines that are syrah-based with high proportions of Grenache and Mourvèdre. Minervois La Livinière is one of the six Languedoc crus. (The other 5 are Corbiere-Boutenac, Saint Chinian Berlou, Saint Chinian Roquebrun, La Clape), La Livinière lies in the northern portion of the Minervois appellation in the foothills of the Montagne Noire. Andrew Jefford wrote about La Livinière last year in Decanter. Reds included in the Minervois AOC are: Syrah, Grenache, Mourvèdre (min. 60%), Carignan, Cinsault, Terret, Aspiran, Piquepoul (ma. 40%). Whites: Marsanne, Rousanne, Maccabeu, Bourboulenc, Clairette, Grenache Blanc, Vermentino, Muscat à Petit Grains. (French Wine Scholar Manual)
To celebrate this tour Stage I am picking one of the wines mentioned in Andrew Jefford’s article above, Chateau Faîteau, Cuvée Gaston, syrah, carignon, grenache and mourvèdre, floral, spicy and fruity.
Rest day and then long stage tomorrow into the Pyrenees!